Bioscopewala Reviews (Top Critics)

The Indian Express
By Shubhra Gupta (2.5/5)

Tagore's touching tale Kabuliwala gets a contemporary re-jig in Bioscopewala, with Danny playing the titular, much-loved, still-remembered character. Rehmat Khan, an Afghan refugee in Kolkata (Danny) strikes up a warm relationship with little Minnie ( Thapa), who grows up, and moves away, as people do. A tragic event brings Minnie back to her childhood home, and the memories she had left behind; Rehmat and his beloved bioscope appears as a hazy dream; gets concrete form in the letters written by her father ( Hussain).

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By Manisha Lakhe (1.5/5)

Based on a wonderful story 'Kabuliwala' by Rabindranath Tagore, this story turns a dry-fruit vendor into a Bioscopewala, and Minnie and her dad into this modern dysfunctional family. It is not just a stretch but the whole film is about Minnie rediscovering 'facts' that everyone and their popcorn in the audience has already guessed. You want to slap Minnie many times, but Danny as Bioscopewala wins your hearts...

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The Hindu
By Namrata Joshi

Rabindranath Tagore's story 'Kabuliwala', made into a feature film by Hemen Gupta in 1961 with Balraj Sahni in the titular role, was a tale of a father-daughter relationship. It was also about how the distance from a loved one, forced by circumstances in life, can make one fear being forgotten and seek out proxy affection in someone who reminds one of her/him.

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By Vishal Verma (3.5/5)

What happens when the nostalgia of Rabindranath Tagore's classic fable KABULIWALA returns to cinemas in a spiffily re mastered form?. A soul searching adage on parenthood, love, loss, redemption and hope is found. The modern day reincarnation of KABULIWALA by debutant Deb Medhekar meets the pathos of Roman Polanski's THE PIANIST and finds elation in its quest for hope and redemption through the magic of cinema ala CINEMA PARADISO.

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By Devesh Sharma (3.5/5)

Stories are a way of preserving history. Of giving us a continuation between the past and present. Of keeping memories alive. Rabindranath Tagore's Kabuliwala was about a Pathan from Kabul who comes to Kolkata to sell dry fruit and befriends a young Bengali girl because she reminds her of the young daughter he has left behind. Director Deb Medhekar has modernised the story. His Kabuliwala is forced to run away from Afghanistan because he cannot bear the tyranny of the Taliban any longer.

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How many of us in this generation, have, either read, or seen the film adaptation of the iconic story by Rabindranath Tagore, Kabuliwala? Not too many, I could say with confidence. The tall, well-built Pathan in the story has many references in the stories that feature in the Calcutta of the early 19th century. Supposedly, a great hit with children who loved him for his bag full of dry fruits, he earned the nickname of Kabuliwala.

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By Prasanna Zore (3/5)

Debutant director Deb Medhekar's Bioscopewala, a contemporary adaptation of Tagore's Kabuliwala, is a sweet film, soothing to the eyes, and weaves a story of human suffering cutting across national boundaries. A guilt-ridden father Robi Basu (Adil Husain) at the airport, on his way to Kabul, pens a confession to his estranged daughter (Gitanjali Thapa) that reaches her only as the last remains of her father whose aeroplane meets a fatal end.

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By Anupam Kant Verma (3/5)

For its relatively short runtime of 90 odd minutes, Deb Medhekar packs in a multitude of ideas and themes within his debut feature film Bioscopewala, a loose adaptation of Rabindranath Tagore's classic story, Kabuliwala. As a result, Bioscopewala often finds itself meandering through sub-plots and narrative zones that could have fared better with deeper exploration.

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Hindustan Times
By Sweta Kaushal (4/5)

A life defined by loneliness and the scarring belief that your own father doesn't love you, only to realize - eventually - that love runs deeper than its obvious display. The various shades of affection and complexities of human relationship is the world that Deb Medhekar's endearing film, Bioscopewala, inhabits.

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By Saibal Chatterjee (4/5)

As loose an adaptation of a short story as any ever attempted, Deb Medhekar's Bioscopewala takes the kernel of Rabindranath Tagore's fabled Kabuliwala and turns it, on one level, into an affecting meditation on paternal love, bereavement, loss and redemption. On another, the tender, warm, pensive film, set in contemporary Kolkata and Afghanistan, ruminates upon the ravages of war and time, the repercussions of religious bigotry and the regenerative power of stories that humans tell, no matter where they come from.

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The Times Of India
By Reza Noorani (3.5/5)

Estranged from her photographer father Robi Basu (Adil Hussain), Mini (Gitanjali Thapa) has to travel back to Kolkota from France where she is studying, to collect her father's remains after his airplane meets with a freak crash. Turns out, he was traveling to Afghanistan for reasons unknown to her. What comes as another shock to her is the fact that her father has obtained custody of an old friend of his, the bioscopewala Rehmat Khan (Danny Denzongpa) who has a dark past that is left to Mini to uncover if she cares to.

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